Saturday, May 22, 2010

Why I like my class.

This may be relatively unimportant to you...But this is why I love my major. This is why I want to get a degree in International Relations.
It begins with the fundamental problem in Game Theory. The Prisoner's dilemma... except where it relates to me is in International Relations, the prisoner's dilemma is used to illustrate how an arms race may occur. It is used to explain how states each make individually rational choices, producing a seemingly irrational result.

Nation You.




3, 3

1, 4


4, 1

2, 2

^ Nation Me.

In this is example. Cooperation would mean We have the military techonology but we will not deploy it.
Defection would mean Cheating, Using Weapons, Whatever you don't want the other guy to do.

a security scale of 0-5. 0 is not secure. 5 is I'm very secure.

If You and me both cooperate. we both feel relatively secure. (3,3)
If you defect and me cooperate, you have an advantage over me because I chose not to use my weapons. you have an increase in security and me have a decrease (1,4)
If me defects and you cooperate, I chose to use my guns and you didn't, I feel more secure. (4,1)
if we both choose to defect we both feel less secure, because you have a weapon you should feel more secure but because I also have a weapon you feel less secure (&vice versa) (2,2)
Therefore the best strategy for you and me is to defect, regardless of what the other is doing.

This is the problem. I've talked about it in math and some nerdy friends who just talk about this stuff. My eyes opened wide when we asked, "So has the problem been solved?" and my teacher said "yes."...
It's a solution strategy called "Tit for Tat".. you choose what the country had previously done. So if we encounter each other.
Encounter 1: You - cooperate. Me- Cooperate.
Encounter 2: You - Defect. Me - Cooperate.
Encounter 3: You -Cooperate. Me - Defect.
Encounter 4. You - Cooperate. me- Cooperate.
It's incredible. The ability to get states to maintain cooperation is incredible. By breaking up Major problems... such as peace in Israel/Palestine... diplomatically the problem can be broken up into many of these Prisoner Dilemma Problems... by solving and building trust with the tiny issues... the major issue, Jerusalem, can be solved.. in tiny tiny bits.
it's so cool.

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